Friday, November 9, 2012

The Feline Mystique

The other day I awoke at around three in the morning.

I had fallen into a coma during the election coverage and all the lights were still on around me. 

On the TV, now way too loud for that wee hour of the morning, was an infomercial for a device that appeared to cut hair, raise your testosterone level and make pancakes all at the same time.

In the room were five cats all sitting close by and intently staring at me. They appeared to be awaiting instruction thus confirming my suspicion that they consider me their leader. Once I lifted myself out of the recliner, they all followed me up the stairs in a very orderly fashion.

It seemed pretty obvious they were expecting an assigment.

Since I'd neglected to buy milk for Seth's morning cereal and had been fretting about it, I decided I would ask the cats to somehow make sure there was a carton of 1% at the ready despite my forgetfulness. They were still staring so I gave them their instructions and staggered off to bed.

Fast forward to the morning. Seth has gone off to work and I stumble into the kitchen, open the fridge and to my amazement, there is a carton of milk and a used cereal bowl and spoon in the sink.
I turn and look at Buzzy who is curled up in his box but looking at me intently with one eye. Then I notice Elfie and Fritzi staring at me from the hallway. Nifi and Charlie's cat, Tito are sitting by the door. They are all staring. "Wow," I say to them all. Thank you! I can't believe you guys actually did it!"

I sat for a few minutes to contemplate this turn of events. Not only was this seriously convenient (I would no longer have to do my own grocery shopping) but, depending on how much they were capable of, I could use them to bedevil people I don't like (Rachel Maddow, in case you were wondering) plus maybe a little light cleaning.

Just as I was about to call Seth to tell him the cats were magic, I noticed their bowl of food was empty. Hmmm. This might explain why they were clustered around my chair last night and all the crazy staring but, nonetheless, I dialed Seth and explained the amazing appearance of a carton of milk in the fridge where there had been none.

"The cats are not magic, Susan Says..." said Seth in the same tired tone he'd used when I'd insisted I could now speak French since I'd fluently done so in a dream. "I bought it on my way home last night." 

The cats may not have put the milk in there but je pense toujours que les chats sont magiques. Comprenez? *

*I actually think I may have dreamed most of this, too.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Vote For Me!

During the past several months I'm sure you’ve all been reminded, in one format or another, to not forget to get out and vote. There are billboards to prompt us, t-shirts, bumper stickers and buttons to encourage us. 

Many of us even look forward to an election worker pressing an adhesive sticker to our fleece lapel after we cast our ballot that says, "I voted!" 

After all, the privilege to elect our governing officials is the hallmark of democracy, is it not?

An informed voter.
I, too, have encouraged others to go and cast their ballots....but only, however, if I’ve made absolutely certain they agree with me. Why would I remind you to vote if you're voting against my candidate of choice. What am I, crazy?

 If I find you’ll be supporting another, I might suggest that you sleep late, try that in-home chemical peel you ordered from QVC or begin the herbal cleanse you bought last month. Surely other voters will take care of it for you…relax.

But, in any case, by the time you’re reading this, the election will soon be over.  
My favorite campaign of all time.

While it’s Iikely that armies of lawyers will be pouting and stamping their little feet in some of the so-called battleground states, the actual campaigning -- and by that I mean robo-calls, mud slinging and blatant lying -- is behind us. And, of course, unless the election was truly too close to call, some of us are happy and the rest of us are not.
"Do as I say, bitches!"

Susan Says..." did not endorse a candidate this year but not because she had no opinion. 

In fact, "Susan Says..." has an opinion on everything and will be happy to share all of them with you next time we meet in the produce aisle, but I also wish I had run for president. In fact, I’ve wanted to be president of this great nation since I was just a tiny little megalomaniac, ruling her Barbies with an iron hand, back in Brooklyn, New York.

Why are they so stingy with the purples?
Like any candidate, I would have made certain promises (for ex. free Hershey's Kisses for all, a higher percentage of purple Skittles in the fun size bags, a TV channel that runs nothing but Cash Cab 24 hours a day and, of course, the permanent exile of the entire Kardashian clan...including Bruce Jenner), but I like to think I would be a fair and loving leader of the free world.

My sons, both of whom heard me shriek "What makes you think this is a democracy??? WELL, IT’S NOT!!!!" countless times during their childhood, might disagree but how hard can it be? 

Sharing, listening, kindness, honesty, open-mindedness, consensus-taking, frugality and surrounding yourself with people who are well-versed in the things you aren't is pretty much it, no?

Hmmmm. Now that I look back on that deceptively simple list, I realize it must not be all that easy. If it were, why else hasn't a president in recent memory been able to combine all those characteristics to be the great leader we’ve needed?

A full beard, really?
Not to mention, a candidate must be telegenic, as well. Ever since Richard Nixon grew a full beard and sweated through it during his 1960 debate with John Kennedy, it is common knowledge that a candidate must, to some degree, look the part. The charisma factor also counts but is less easy to define. 

Unsuccessfully trying to kill him with her eyes.

Bill Clinton’s personal charisma, according to everyone but Hillary, is legendary. And yet, to bring up Richard Nixon once more, it’s possible to win with neither looks nor charisma.

It really shouldn’t be such a mystery. Our next president, whoever he is, must be willing to persevere, make sacrifices, compromise, think clearly, project strength, help shape a bright future and lead us toward it.  

Whoever you turn out to be, Mr. President, I’m sure I’m not the only one who wishes you the very best. Now about those Hershey Kisses……….